UPDATE 1-Prices, logistics to spur planting in Brazil's main grain state

viernes 20 de mayo de 2016 13:43 GYT

(Adds details, comments from Possebon, paragraphs 3-11)

By Roberto Samora

SORRISO, Brazil May 20 (Reuters) - High corn prices in Brazil should prompt producers in the main grain state of Mato Grosso to expand planting of the grain for the 2016/2017 season that starts in September, the state's deputy agriculture secretary Alexandre Possebon told Reuters.

Improved transport options via new roads and ports to the north of the state will also fuel expansion of soybean planting as the region gains quicker, cheaper access to export markets, he added.

"It's possible that the coming planting of winter corn will increase a lot as farmers will be enthused by these prices," Possebon told Reuters, during the Rally da Safra crop tour.

The increase in output of grains should solidify the state's importance in the production of poultry and pork in the near future for producers such as BRF SA, the world's largest exporter of poultry, Possebon said.

Brazil exported a record amount of corn from July through March when the sharp depreciation of the real against the dollar propelled sales abroad. This created a shortfall in supplies for the domestic livestock industry, which had to turn to importing the grain from Argentina and the region.

Prices of corn in Mato Grosso are quoted around 40 reais ($11.40) per 60-kg bag, nearly three times the price a year ago. Harvesting of the winter crop in the coming weeks is expected to ease prices off of near record highs.

But grain experts from analysts Agroconsult, which is hosting the crop tour, said the supply shortage would not be fully resolved until 2017, given strong demand.   Continuación...